by Rosemarie Pace
Pax Christi Metro New York, Director

Kids with peace signsOver the next few weeks, a new school year will be beginning across the country. With it will come the usual mix of emotions: from dread to eager excitement, resistance to anticipation, anxiety to a sense of adventure, disinterest to curiosity. There will likely be new clothes, new books, new relationships, and new experiences. Certainly there will be new knowledge to gain and new skills to acquire. And all this not just for students–but for parents and teachers, too!

As new as a new school year is, it’s also somewhat predictable. For the most part, we know the subjects that will be studied, the homework to complete, the tests to take. We probably know the extra-curricular activities to be offered. We even, perhaps especially, know the holidays to look forward to.

But do we know if Peace Education is going to be part of the curriculum? Is this something we’ve planned for and eagerly anticipate? If so, congratulations! If not, why not? At the beginning of 2012, Pope Benedict XVI’s World Day of Peace Message was entitled “Educating Young People in Justice and Peace.” Pax Christi USA shared a proposal from Bob Cooke of PC Metro D.C.-Baltimore that this be a year of outreach to our students and young adults to help them proclaim the gospel of peace and work for justice in our world. No matter how well we’ve done in this regard since January, here’s a new opportunity for us to revitalize our efforts.

In this PSA e-bulletin, you’ll find PCUSA’s Student’s Prayer for Peace, which I think you’ll find resonates with all of us as students of gospel nonviolence. You’ll also learn more about Peace Education and receive several suggestions for ways to make it happen.

Click here to see the PSA e-bulletin, “Peace education resources for Back-to-School.”

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